KABUL, Afghanistan – An Afghan-international force came under small- arms and rocket propelled grenade fire yesterday evening in the Yahya Khel district of Paktika province.
After positively identifying the insurgents, the combined force requested air support. A coalition aircraft engaged the insurgents with a precision-guided munition. As a result of the strike several insurgents were killed and several were later detained. The insurgents fired at the combined force from an area near an unmarked mosque.
During the engagement the windows of the unmarked mosque were broken.
Following the engagement, the patrol found a weapons cache consisting of six hand grenades, three AK-47s, one sniper rifle, a rocket-propelled grenade and a book on how to make improvised explosive devices.
There were no reported civilian casualties and the combined force is discussing the incident with local elders and government officials.
“Insurgents often operate in or near mosques, while our forces take great care to prevent damage to these important structures,” said Navy Capt. Jane Campbell, ISAF Joint Command spokesperson.
In the last five weeks, Afghan and ISAF forces have been engaged by insurgents operating in or near mosques on two occasions. June 3 in Sayyidabad district, Wardak province, a joint force received fire from and found an RPG launcher and RPG rounds, multiple automatic rifles, and communications equipment in two mosques.
July 4 in Chahar Darah district, Kunduz province, a joint force discovered a cache of rocket propelled grenades, automatic weapons and an IED ready for use in the vicinity of a local mosque.
Compiled from International Security Assistance Force Joint Command News Releases